That wonderful whiff of garlic aroma won’t quite make its way back to Central California again as Fresno State chefs Erik Debaude and Bryan Kramer fell short of winning their second straight Gilroy Garlic Bowl championship today.
Debaude, University Dining Services executive chef, and his sous chef Kramer, a Fresno State alumnus, were bested by their counterparts from Santa Clara University at the Gilroy Garlic Festival Garlic Bowl this afternoon.
The collegiate competition is part of the three-day festival that draws more than 100,000 visitors to Christmas Hill Park in Gilroy.
Using several Fresno State student products from the Rue and Gwen Gibson Farm Market such as sweet corn and olive oil, the Fresno State chefs had one hour to prepare, plate and serve two dishes — each incorporating six cloves of fresh garlic — to a panel of five judges.
Recipes for the two dishes — “Fresno State Boneless Rack of Lamb with Orange Blossom Honey Sauce, Sweet Potato Mash and Stuffed Zucchini with Roquefort Cheese” and “Stuffed Cherry Tomatoes with Basil Butter Escargot and Garlic Sea Salt Brioche Toast” — are published in the 2014 Cook-off Cookbook sold at the festival.
“I wanted to try something a little different by using escargot,” Debaude said. “We faced some worthy competition and we are honored to be included in this great cook-off. Congratulations to Santa Clara.”
Santa Clara earned a $5,000 cash scholarship. Fresno State and Berkeley won $1,000. As winners last year, Fresno State set up two $2,500 scholarships that are expected to be announced in the fall, said Debbie Astone, Fresno State Foundation executive director and associate vice president for auxiliary operations.
Astone and University Dining Services director Debbie Guill led a delegation of about 40 Red Wave supporters to Gilroy for today’s competition.